Athens County Parks & Nature Preserves

The following list of parks and preserves includes those managed by federal, state, county, and non-governmental agencies (such as the National Audubon Society, the Nature Conservancy, various historical societies, etc.).

We have tried to collect information on the activities and facilities available at various parks, but things may change without us knowing about it. So please double-check the information at the official site.


B&O Rail Trail (Multi-use trail)
  • Official Site
  • 13 miles of trail when complete
  • Supported activities:
    • Mountain biking
  • Miscellaneous info: This trail will eventually link with the Hockhocking Adena Bikeway bike trail and with the Moonville rail trail.
Baker Easement (Athens Conservancy (NGO))
  • Official Site
  • 284 acres in all
  • Supported activities:
    • Hunting
    • Horseback riding
  • Miscellaneous info: Bridle / Hiking trail. Deer hunting by permit
Blair Preserve (Athens Conservancy (NGO))
  • Official Site
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • 75 acres in all
  • Unspecified mileage of total trail
  • Supported activities:
    • Hunting
    • Mountain biking
    • Bringing your dog
  • Miscellaneous info: Adjacent to Sells Park / Strouds Run with interconnecting trails
Bluebell Preserve (Athens Conservancy (NGO))
Burr Oak (State Park)
  • Official Site
  • Trail Map
  • Campground Map
  • Park Map
  • Lodge
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • Lodge:
    • 10220 Burr Oak Lodge Road, Glouster, Ohio 45732
    • GPS coordinates: 39.5308132, -82.0372993
    • View on Google Maps
  • Area:
    • 2,593 acres in all
    • 664 acres lake
  • Trail information:
    • 10.6 miles of hiking trails
    • 7 miles of bridle trails (also open to backpackers)
    • 11.4 miles of bridle trail
  • Supported activities:
    • Fishing
    • Hunting
    • Camping
    • Sledding
    • Horseback riding
    • Bringing your dog
    • Low-horsepower boating (depending on the park, this may mean boats with electric motors, boats whose motors do not exceed a specific horsepower, or boats with any horsepower motor as long as no wake is generated; check the official site for details)
  • Facilities:
    • Restroom facilities
    • Disc golf course
    • Swimming beach
    • Part of the Buckeye Trail passes through the area
Desonier (State Nature Preserve)
  • Official Site
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • Location:
    • 3385 Deep Hollow Rd., Coolville, Ohio 45723
    • GPS coordinates: 39.236867, -81.868167
  • 502 acres in all
  • 2.5 miles of total trail
  • Supported activities:
    • Good site for bird watching
  • Miscellaneous info: Contains a large pond created by beavers.
Fox Lake Wildlife Area (State Wildlife Area)
Gifford SF (State Forest)
Hockhocking Adena Bikeway (Bike Path)
Lake Snowden (Park – Hocking College)
  • Official Site
  • Area:
    • 675 acres in all
    • 136 acres lake
  • 12.5 miles of bridle trail
  • Supported activities:
    • Fishing
    • Camping
    • Horseback riding
    • Low-horsepower boating (depending on the park, this may mean boats with electric motors, boats whose motors do not exceed a specific horsepower, or boats with any horsepower motor as long as no wake is generated; check the official site for details)
  • Facilities:
    • Restroom facilities
    • Swimming beach
  • Miscellaneous info: This is a park dedicated to both educational and recreational purposes. It is owned and managed by Hocking College. The park also has a horse camp and fish hatchery.
Moonville Rail Trail (Multi-use trail)
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • Wikipedia
  • West-most end in Zaleski:
    • GPS coordinates: 39.286111, -82.390000
    • View on Google Maps
  • East-most end in Mineral:
    • GPS coordinates: 39.324722, -82.265000
    • View on Google Maps
  • 16 miles of trail when complete
  • Supported activities:
    • Mountain biking
    • Horseback riding
    • Bringing your dog
  • Miscellaneous info: Hiking / Mountain bike / Equestrian trail.
Poston Plant Lands Public Hunting Area (State Wildlife Area)
Riddle (State Nature Preserve)
Sells City Park (Athens Municipal Park)
  • Official Site
  • Trail Map
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • Trail Map for Mountain Biking (includes Strouds Run)
  • Supported activities:
    • Mountain biking
    • Bringing your dog
  • Miscellaneous info: There are nearly 21 miles of trail in all (8 trails with 3 connector trails); this includes trails within the city park, trails that appear to be on Ohio University property, and trail that are on the western portion of Strouds Run State Park. It is possible to join up with the trails that also connect to those on the eastern side of Strouds Run State Park. In addition there is a 19-mile, paved bike path.
Shade River (State Forest)
  • Official Site
  • Trail Map
  • 2,859 acres in all
  • 2 miles of total trail
  • Supported activities:
    • Hunting
    • Bringing your dog
  • Miscellaneous info: Near Forked Run State Park
Strouds Run (State Park)
  • Official Site
  • Trail Map
  • Campground Map
  • Park Map
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • Location:
    • 11661 State Park Road, Athens, Ohio 45701
  • 2,606 acres in all
  • Trail information:
    • More than 11.5 miles of hiking trails
    • More than 24.1 miles of mountain biking / hiking trails (includes trails extending into Sells Park)
    • Unspecified mileage of bridle trails
  • Supported activities:
    • Fishing
    • Hunting
    • Camping
    • Mountain biking
    • Cross-country skiing
    • Sledding
    • Good site for bird watching
    • Horseback riding
    • Bringing your dog
    • Low-horsepower boating (depending on the park, this may mean boats with electric motors, boats whose motors do not exceed a specific horsepower, or boats with any horsepower motor as long as no wake is generated; check the official site for details)
  • Facilities:
    • Restroom facilities
    • Swimming beach
  • Miscellaneous info: Located near the main campus of Ohio University. Many trail connect with those in the adjoining Sells Park.
The Plains Preserve (Athens Conservancy (NGO))
  • Official Site
  • 13 acres in all
  • Miscellaneous info: There is a propoway that may one day pass through the park.
The Ridges / Ridges Trails (Ohio Univ / National Alliance for Mental Illness (NGO))
Trimble Township Community Forest (Appalachia Ohio Alliance (NGO))
Tucker Run Preserve (Athens Conservancy (NGO))
Wallace H O’Dowd Wildlife Area (State Wildlife Area)
Waterloo Wildlife Area (State Wildlife Area)
Wayne NF – Athens Unit (National Forest)
Wildcat Hollow Primitive Weapons Hunting Area (State Wildlife Area)
  • Official Site
  • Wildlife Area Map
  • Location #1:
    • Located near or in Ringgold, Ohio 43758
  • Location #2:
    • Located near or in Glouster, Ohio 45732
  • Location #3:
    • Located near or in Corning, Ohio 43730
  • Supported activities:
    • Hunting
  • Miscellaneous info: The Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources strongly recommends purchasing a topographical map if you plan on hunting in this area.
Zaleski (State Forest)
  • Official Site
  • Bridle Trail Map
  • Backpacking Map
  • Brochure
  • Posts at TrekOhio
  • Parking for backpacking / hiking trails:
    • OH-278, New Plymouth, Ohio 45654 (estimated using Google Maps)
    • GPS coordinates: 39.331500, -82.339861
    • View on Google Maps
  • Hope Schoolhouse:
    • 27961 Wheelabout Rd., McArthur, Ohio 45651 (estimated using Google Maps)
    • GPS coordinates: 39.316000, -82.352389
    • View on Google Maps
  • Parking for Moonville Tunnel:
    • Hope-Moonville Rd., McArthur, Ohio 45651 (estimated using Google Maps)
    • GPS coordinates: 39.308444, -82.324528
    • View on Google Maps
  • 28,614 acres in all
  • Trail information:
    • 28.8 miles of backpacking trail
    • 31 miles of bridle trails
    • 10 miles of loop trail for day hikes
  • Supported activities:
    • Hunting
    • Good site for bird watching
    • Horseback riding
    • Bringing your dog
  • Facilities:
    • Firearm range
  • Miscellaneous info: Zaleski Backpacking Trail | 16-site horse camp

Last Update: Aug 21, 2018






© Deborah Platt, Robert Platt and TrekOhio.com 2012 to 2018


2 thoughts on “Athens County Parks & Nature Preserves

    1. Looks like the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources (ODNR) servers are down at the moment. Also, the AthensTrails.org has changed their web site. Can’t do anything about ODNR (we are not affiliated with them). But I will update our links to AthensTrails.org. I’d like to thank you for pointing out the problems. Keeping up with changes to federal, state, county, and NGO sites is an on-going job. We appreciate it when our readers point out link problems, so we can fix them more rapidly.

      Update: ODNR is back (perhaps they were doing maintenance?). Updated the NGO links to directly link to Athens Conservancy. Again, thanks.

Leave a Reply

You have to agree to the comment policy.

Complete the following sentence by typing either real or spam:
My comment is ...